What are the best meal prep tools?
Meal prepping is a great way to save time in the kitchen every time you’re ready to make a meal. But it can be difficult and time-consuming without the right tools.
Luckily, there are a variety of kitchen tools and gadgets that can help make meal prep a breeze.
Before you get started with meal prepping, make sure to have these best meal prep tools in your kitchen.
What is Meal Prepping?
Meal prepping consists of preparing food ahead of time to make things easier when you’re ready to cook and eat. There are a few different ways you can meal prep based on your preferences and needs.
- Batch cooking: Making big recipes at once and freezing/saving them to reheat and eat later on
- Prepping ingredients: Preparing parts of a recipe or recipes beforehand to reduce the amount of work needed when you’re ready to cook the meal
- Portioning meals: Separating parts of a meal in to individual portions ahead of time so the food is ready to grab and go for each meal
Meal prepping can help you save time during the busy weekdays by taking care of all the time-consuming tasks, like peeling and chopping, ahead of time.
It can also help make healthy eating easier by taking the time to prep and plan your meals for the week.
Meal Prep Tools
Meal prepping is a great way to make cooking simpler at each meal. But without the right tools, prepping your ingredients can be pretty time consuming. That’s why you need to be sure your kitchen is ready for meal prep before you get started.
With these handy meal prep tools, you’ll be on your way to successfully meal prepping each week.
The most important tools you need for meal prepping are your knives. That means you’re going to need a high-quality knife set in your kitchen to ensure you have all the knives you’ll need for each of your prepping tasks. When stocking your kitchen for meal prep, make sure to have these knives in your set:
- Chef’s knife: If you only have one knife in your kitchen make sure it’s a chef’s knife. This type of knife usually has a broad blade that tapers upward to a point on the end. It is used for just about any chopping task in the kitchen, from cutting meat to dicing onions.
- Utility knife: For more precise cutting tasks, it’s a good idea to have a utility knife in your knife set. This long, thin knife is perfect for creating thin slices and filleting meat.
- Boning or fillet knife: Will you be cutting large cuts of meat as part of your meal prep? Having a boning or fillet knife will make quick work of that task. Both boning and fillet knives are designed to separate meat from bone and cut up meat with ease.
- Pairing knife: Cutting and peeling fruits and vegetables is much easier with the right knife. The small blade on a pairing knife is ideal for cutting these types of ingredients.
- Bread knife: The serrated edge on a bread knife is ideal for slicing loaves of bread and pieces of cake. Use a sawing motion to cut through those soft items to prevent squishing the bread as you cut.
- Kitchen shears: A sharp pair of kitchen shears can often take the place of a knife for quick cutting. Kitchen shears are a pair of scissors made up of two thick blades. You can use them for anything from cutting herbs to slicing pizza.
While prepping your meals for the week, you’ll be cutting a variety of different types of food. So, you’re going to need a variety of cutting boards to prevent cross-contamination as you prep. Wood cutting boards are great for cutting fruits, vegetables, and breads.
While plastic cutting boards are the best choice for cutting meats.
Or make rinsing and cutting your vegetables easier with an over the sink cutting board and strainer. Be sure not to mix your cutting boards as you prep to prevent the residue from your meat cross-contaminating your fruits and vegetables.
Easily transfer all your chopped ingredients from the cutting board to your storage containers with the help of a bench scraper.
This handy tool will cut down on your prep time by making it so easy to move all those tiny bits of chopped veggies and herbs directly from the cutting board to your containers without making a mess in the process.
The raised edges on this bench scraper scoop ensure that all your ingredients stay on the scraper while you’re transferring them.
Measuring Cups and Spoons
From measuring your serving sizes to help you stay on track with your diet to premeasuring ingredients for each of your meals, you’re going to want to make sure you have a set of measuring cups and spoons for meal prepping.
In addition to having a set of measuring cups for dry ingredients, it’s also important to have a large measuring cup for your liquid ingredients, too.
One of the best ways to use your time meal prepping is to handle all those small tasks that take up so much time while cooking. That means you’ll need a peeler on hand to get rid of the peels and skins on your vegetables so they’re ready to cook.
Look for a vegetable peeler with both a straight edge for peeling and a serrated edge for julienne style cuts to make the most of this handy kitchen utensil.
A big part of prepping your food for cooking involves washing your produce. Colanders can make washing, rinsing, and draining all the elements of your meals much easier.
Use collapsible colanders to take up less space in your kitchen cabinets, allowing you to have several colanders at your disposal while you meal prep.
Freshly grated cheese tastes so much better than store-bought. So, if you enjoy using fresh cheese in your recipes, you’ll need to have a good grater in your kitchen.
In addition to grating cheese, you can use this versatile kitchen gadget for grating vegetables, like carrots, potatoes, and radishes, to add to your soups, sauces, and stir fries.
A box grater is a great choice for your kitchen because it features four different types of grates, giving you options when it comes to how you prepare your food for each meal.
Using fresh herbs is a great way to add more flavor to your meals. But cutting and chopping all those tiny leaves can be pretty time consuming, especially if you have a ton of other prepping you need to take care of.
Reduce the amount of work it takes to prepare fresh herbs for your meals with the help of herb scissors. The multi-blade scissors can easily cut through herb leaves, allowing you to get a fine chop on all your fresh herbs without all the extra work.
Vegetable Chopper and Dicer
Take the work out of slicing and spiralizing your vegetables with the help of a vegetable chopper and dicer.
This easy to use kitchen utensil will help you prepare all your fruits and veggies ahead of time so you won’t need to spend extra time in the kitchen when you’re ready to make dinner.
With four interchangeable plates, this handy appliance will help you dice, julienne, slice, and chop all your fruits and vegetables with ease in a matter of seconds.
From blending up dough for your desserts to stirring together ingredients for a salad, there are many uses for a set of mixing bowls in your kitchen – especially if you’re meal prepping.
Having a set of bowls is a great option to ensure you have plenty of bowls at your disposal while you’re cooking. Look for bowls with a nonslip bottom to prevent spills from happening as you mix and stir.
Make quick work of prepping your meal ingredients with the help of a food processor. There are a variety of great ways to use this handy appliance as you meal prep.
With the help of a food processor, you can chop your vegetables, shred cheese, blend sauces and soups, and make dough. But that’s just the beginning! This appliance comes with dedicated blades and disks to help with all the food prep tasks you can imagine.
Meal Storage Tools
Once you have your ingredients prepped and ready to go, you’ll need a place to store those ingredients until you’re ready to use them. These meal storage tools will ensure you have everything you need to keep your meals and prepped ingredients fresh until you need them.
Microwave Steaming Bags
With the help of these microwave steaming bags, you can prep all your side dishes ahead of time and pop them in the microwave to steam when you’re ready to eat.
Simply chop the veggies and place them in the bag. Store the bags in the refrigerator until it’s time for dinner, then place the bags in the microwave to cook at meal time.
Reusable Food Bags
Storing the food you prep in plastic bags is a great way to keep the food fresh until you’re ready to use it. But once you start meal prepping and storing your prepped ingredients, you’re going to see how much waste occurs when you use disposable bags.
Save money and the environment with the help of reusable storage bags. These silicone food grade bags will safely store your prepped ingredients until you’re ready to use them. And when you’re done, you can place them in the dishwasher to use them again next week.
Since mason jars are both freezer and microwave safe, they’re a great option for storing prepped ingredients until you’re ready to use them.
Store soups and sauces in jars for easy access. Or make ready-to-go meals, like salads, in the jar so you can grab and go.
The jars will keep the ingredients safe and fresh throughout the week and can be washed and reused from week to week.
Glass Baking Dishes With Lids
Prepping entire meals is a great way to save time on a busy weeknight. And one of the best ways to prepare and store a ready-to-bake meal is directly in a baking dish.
These glass baking dishes with lids will help you store your premade dish in the fridge or freezer until it’s ready to be baked.
Just fill the dish with your casserole, cover it, and chill it. When it’s ready to be baked, remove the lid and place your dinner in the oven to cook.
If your baking dishes don’t have lids, don’t worry! You can also cover your dishes with aluminum foil for storage and baking.
This option is great for dishes that need to be covered while cooking because you can easily transport the dish from the fridge to the oven without the need to swap out a new lid on your baking dish.
And aluminum foil helps make dinner cleanup a breeze. Just line your pans with foil to easily clean the baking dishes after you’re done baking.
Plastic Storage Containers
Having a good set of plastic storage containers will be a life-saver when you’re finished prepping your ingredients and are ready to store those ingredients away.
A set of plastic containers in different sizes will ensure you have all the containers you need to store away each of your meal’s ingredients.
You can also purchase meal containers featuring compartments for a meal’s main dish and sides, making it simple to pre-portion each of your meals for the week for easy grab-and-go meal options.
Make sure your containers are safe for the microwave and dishwasher so you can easily reheat your meals and wash the dishes with ease.
Using bags to store your prepped ingredients and dinner leftovers is a simple way to keep those ingredients fresh. But pouring ingredients into a freezer bag is almost impossible on your own.
With the help of a baggie stand, you can easily fill your freezer bags without making a mess.
Just clip the top of your storage bag to the top of the stand to hold the bag open and upright, making it simple to pour your ingredients right into the bag.
Meal Cooking Tools
Prepping and storing the ingredients for your meals is only a part of the meal prepping process. After all your hard work is done, it’s time to start cooking!
Prepping your ingredients can help you cut down on the time it takes to make dinner, but you might need a little more help in the kitchen to speed up the time it takes to cook each meal.
Make cooking even easier with these meal cooking tools that can help your family enjoy delicious meals with ease.
Cut your cooking time in half with the help of an Instant Pot.
This amazing appliance works as a pressure cooker, rice cooker, and slow cooker all in one. You can quickly cook a full dinner in a matter of minutes, cook your main dish without turning on the oven, or whip up an easy side while the rest of your dinner cooks in the oven.
No matter how you use your Instant Pot, it’s sure to make meal prepping and cooking much easier for you and your family.
Dump and cook meals are a great way to save time on dinner prep. And the best part about these easy meals is that you can do all the prep work ahead of time and simply dump the ingredients in your slow cooker to bake.
That makes a slow cooker an essential element to easy meal prep!
Look for a slow cooker with a programmable setting so you can add your ingredients in the morning before heading to work, set the timer, and let your slow cooker do all the hard work of making dinner for you.
Sheet pan meals are another simple way to cook an entire dinner at once.
You can take the time to prepare all your ingredients ahead of time, so all you need to do is transfer them to your baking sheets and put them in the oven.
In just a short time, you can have a delicious meal for your family ready to eat without any hard work on your part.
Final Thoughts on the Best Meal Prep Accessories
You certainly don’t need all of these items to meal prep. It’ll make meal prepping faster and more convenient if you have them!
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